Poets to perform reading in baboon cage

gregory nahas lettherebemonkeys at yahoo.com
Thu Dec 13 11:37:50 EST 2001

Poets to hold reading in zoo's baboon enclosure 

Seven poets are to hold a reading of their work inside
the baboon enclosure of a zoo in Chile.

They are holding the recital as a form of protest.
They want to imply that apes are more receptive to
poetry than their countrymen.

They will be lowered into the enclosure in a small
cage, specially designed to protect them from possible

"We will descend into the enclosure on Saturday
morning at around 11 am," one of the poets told
newspaper Las Ultimas Noticias. "For around an hour we
will take it in turns to read our poems, creating a
sort of dialogue with the apes."

They are hopeful the baboons at Santiago's
Metropolitan Zoo will sit quietly and listen to the
poetry - thereby showing they are more interested than
the average Chilean. The spokesman says they will be
asking the public not to throw peanuts at the caged

"We are reading our poetry to the monkeys because
poets need an audience and it is hard to find people
who want to listen to us," the poet's spokesman said.

The poets include Raul Zurita, who during previous
performances has burned his face with molten iron and
ammonia and publicly masturbated.

Vet Maricarmen Barba said she was surprised the zoo
authorities were allowing the reading to go ahead.

"These monkeys like biting and are aggressively
territorial," she said. "I wouldn't get in there with
them because they are extremely unpredictable. They
could easily kill someone."

Story filed: 14:13 Thursday 13th December 2001

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